Salvation Army Helps Reconnect Father and Son

Lucas (left) Simon (right)

This Father’s Day won’t be a typical one for Lucas. With a new lease on life, he has a purpose to fulfill—  building a relationship with his son.

At a young age, Lucas and his family moved to PEI where his father secured a job in a lobster plant. During his teenage years, things changed for Lucas. Drinking binges were more frequent and he became dependent on alcohol. He soon found himself homeless and in and out of treatment programs. 

“I always seemed to fall into the same hole of addiction and despair,” Lucas recalls. “I was burning bridges with those who loved me.” 

Addiction Takes Over

The alcohol addiction took its final blow when it separated Lucas from his son.

Bedford-Macdonald House

Bedford-MacDonald House

“I chose alcohol over my son,” says Lucas. Growing weary of the drinking, he knew he had to make a change. That’s when he sought help at The Salvation Army Bedford MacDonald House, which provides shelter, support and compassion for men experiencing homelessness in Charlottetown, PEI.

“I was at Bedford MacDonald House for nine months and I made progress daily with combating my addiction until I had it conquered,” says Lucas.

Reconnecting with Family

Once he received the help that he needed, Lucas was ready to begin a new life and rebuild a relationship with his three-year-old son, Simon.

“If Simon asks to see me, his mom will bring him right over,” says Lucas. “Last week when I greeted him at the car, Simon said, ‘I really miss you daddy.’”

Father and son bonding time often takes place at a park to play soccer and other activities. When the two are not together, they will Facetime to stay connected. 

As Lucas relays an encouraging word to those who may be going through a similar struggle, he says, “Don’t give up. Continue to do what is best as a dad and as a person. It starts with you.”

Gratitude and a New Life

Lucas is now employed and has an apartment of his own, but he still visits the Bedford Macdonald House often.

“I go there to visit because it’s a great atmosphere; it’s like family,” says Lucas. “This recovery journey was hard, it feels like you’re not going to get anywhere, but over time good things will happen to those who wait. I feel like a better person and I wouldn’t change a thing.”

By Jan Keats